NORTHERN STATE UNIVERSITY | SPRING 2022 HISTORY AND SOCIAL SCIENCES CHAIR Steven Usitalo A MESSAGE from the Chair of History and Social Sciences THREE YEARS AGO, members of NSU’s American Indian Studies Advisory Committee, with the assistance of faculty from the College of Arts and Sciences, completed the process of converting the American Indian Studies Minor into a Native and Indigenous Studies Minor. The new name better reflects the content of the program, and it also signals a new beginning for Native Studies at NSU. The old American Indian Studies Minor existed for decades, but it had become inactive due to a lack of faculty expertise in the area. Dr. Celestino Mendez, former CAS Dean (retired in 2016), and History and Social Sciences Chair Steven A. Usitalo, organized several meetings with CAS faculty and university staff to “re-establish” Native Studies as an academic discipline at NSU. Ms. Lara Nelson, an academic adviser at NSU who works primarily with Native students, contributed enormously to these efforts. Unfortunately, the absence of faculty with expertise (or scholarly interest) in Native Studies stymied these efforts. Over the past few years, several new faculty members were hired: Dr. Amber Henderson (in the School of Professional Studies), and Drs. Kristi Brownfield, Liz Sills, and Pamela Monaghan-Geernaert, in CAS. These faculty members, along with select longserving professors, including Ric Dias and Steven Usitalo, either brought to NSU an academic background that included Native and Indigenous Studies, or were willing to acquire broad academic expertise in the area. NSU will need to secure adjuncts to teach courses in subjects such as Lakota language studies. Native and Indigenous Studies encourages and supports teaching and intellectual engagement around the Social Sciences and Humanities. It provides the critical thinking skills that enable students to understand the world around us. The courses in Native Studies, History, Sociology, Criminal Justice, and Languages that make up the minor, provide an indigenous-centered approach to the liberal arts. The interdisciplinary minor (18-19 credits) aligns perfectly with the aims of CAS to create a “community” of scholars who promote a healthy civic society. The minor should be of interest to any student at NSU. It provides an unparalleled introduction to South Dakota and the region more generally. Given the neglect accorded Native Studies in the past, the Native and Indigenous Studies program is a valuable minor that could be productively joined to any major.
JONATHON FARGHER received his B.S.Ed. in History from Northern State University in the spring of 2021. He is currently a 7-12 teacher at Eureka Public School in Eureka, SD, instructing in middle and high school History and Social Studies. Fargher credits Northern with giving him “an incredible opportunity as a non-traditional student to pursue a degree in education.” His journey to become a teacher was not easy: “Being a former bible-college student, I did not come to NSU with transferable credits, so it was back to the beginning for me. I started with my General Studies courses online through Northern while I worked as a paraprofessional in a Special Education classroom and coached middle school sports.” Once Fargher had taken full advantage of the online opportunities, it was on to campus full time. He began commuting from Eureka to Northern. He credits both his family and the NSU staff for encouragement during that difficult period: “I could not have accomplished all of this,” he says, “without the support of my amazing wife, two sons, and the NSU staff—Justin Bartel, Dave Grettler, and Art Marmorstein, to name a few.” Now that he is a full-time educator, Fargher has great appreciation for his academic experience at Northern: “The School of Education and its instructors prepared me very well to meet the demands of teaching in the classroom. From lesson planning and execution, to implementing state standards and meeting the needs of each one of my students, Northern helped me become the teacher I am today. I love working with young people, and each day I am reminded that it was worth the hard work I put in at NSU.” Reflecting on his own experience, Fargher offers some suggestions for students focused on careers in teaching: “For the freshmen who are just beginning their first steps in the field of education, I would emphasize the need to be goal-oriented. Don’t procrastinate. Build healthy relationships with your peers and professors. Give your all to becoming the life-long learner you need to be. Enjoy the journey and find ways to have fun and laugh at yourself a bit. Finally, picture the faces of the students you will positively impact and the potential legacy you’ll leave in each one of their hearts. Go Wolves!” ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT: Jonathon Fargher “The School of Education and its instructors prepared me very well to meet the demands of teaching in the classroom.” PARKER HEGER, a Chemistry major and a 2021 graduate, collaborated with Dr. Andrew Russell, Associate Professor of Biology, in publishing an article titled “Nylon Oxygen Barrier Tubing Reduces Biofouling in Beer Draught Lines.” The article focused on prevention of microbial biofilm formation in beer draft lines and was published in Fine Focus: An International Microbiology Journal for Undergraduate Studies. Heger, who was a member of the NSU Honors Program and the president and founder of NSU PreHealth Club, continues his studies in the University of North Dakota Medical School. JAEDEN SHAVING and LENNON KELLER, NSU History majors, read prepared oral comments to delivered papers at the USD Student History Conference on February 24. Shaving commented on a paper entitled, “Canada’s Residential Schools,” and Keller commented on a paper entitled, “Lincoln’s Scapegoat.” CARLI FLEMMER calls her pursuit of the master’s degree in Teaching and Learning “an invigorating experience.” She is currently in her tenth year of teaching high school English, and this uniquely specialized graduate program through Northern State University gave her the opportunity to pursue meaningful professional development that has already influenced student learning within her classroom at the NSU Center for Statewide E-Learning. “I went into the program to earn qualification to teach high school dual-credit courses,” she says, “but I am gaining much more than the credits on my transcript. The courses I have taken from the NSU Education Department and English Department have pushed me to grow pedagogically as an educator, while also helping me to hone expert skills in the subject areas of literature and composition. I have had the privilege to connect and collaborate with fellow graduate students, undergraduate students, and NSU professors who share my passions for education and the written word.” Balancing courses as a full-time teacher and mother of two small children has been challenging, but the work, says Flemmer, has been “fulfilling.” GRADUATE STUDENT SPOTLIGHT Carli Flemmer STUDENT Achievements “I am gaining much more than the credits on my transcript.”
NORTHERN’S PreHealth students are given a unique opportunity for experiential learning right on campus with our state-ofthe-art cadaver lab. Our sophomore-level Human Anatomy students utilize the cadaver lab as part of the anatomy laboratory curriculum. Juniors or seniors applying to medical, nursing, dental, physician assistant, or physical or occupational therapy programs also have the option to enroll in our Gross Anatomy course. “This type of hands-on learning is very impactful for our students. Immersive learning activities enhance our students’ understanding of the structures, but beyond that, students get to observe disease processes and the amazing variations among individuals,” said Dr. Amy Dolan, Professor of Biology. This course teaches the fundamentals of cadaver dissection and directly prepares students for their graduate programs in health-care fields. Beyond just the classroom learning objectives, through these experiences the students also learn gratitude. “We are incredibly lucky to have this program and appreciate the selfless gift given by our body donors to our students and our community,” said Dolan. NORTHERN PRE-HEALTH STUDENTS Get Hands-on Experience in the Anatomy Lab NSU SPEECH AND DEBATE TEAM in Action DESPITE Covid-19 still affecting nearly everything we do, the NSU Speech and Debate Team has been doing well at tournaments they have attended this academic year. In the fall semester, the team attended three tournaments. At the Jackrabbit Joust, Kahden Mooney and Jakob Lund took first place in Parliamentary Debate. Along with this victory, Mooney, Lund, and Ethan Kurtz took the top three speaker awards in Parliamentary Debate respectively. At the Valley Forensics League #1 (VFL), Emma Murdock took first place in Impromptu Speaking. At VFL #2, Jakob Lund and Alex Arndt took first place in Parliamentary Debate, with Lund taking Top Speaker. After a short break for the new semester, the team attended two more tournaments in the spring. At VFL #3, Rachel Peterson took third place in Prose, and fourth place in Dramatic Interpretation. Kurtz also took fifth place in Impromptu Speaking. At VFL #4, Kurtz took third Top Speaker in Parliamentary Debate. Right now, the team is preparing for the Pi Kappa Delta National Tournament (PKD). The team has worked long and hard training for PKD, and is looking forward to continuing their success for the tournament which takes place from March 10 until March 12, 2022 at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, FL. FOUR College of Arts and Sciences students defended their Honors Theses in the fall of 2021: Mary Johnson Fullmer, Megan Mooberry, Laurie Rogers, and Olivia Rud. This spring, an even larger group is scheduled to defend their Honors Theses: Olivia Becker, Kristen Calderon, Mackenzie McClemans, Jakob Lund, Jessica Stockert, Drew Talberg, Garret Thompson, and Tawnie Williams. Please join us in congratulating the students on this significant academic achievement. HONORS STUDENTS Defended their Theses STUDENTS enrolled in INDG/CMST 335 Native Identity and Resiliency with Dr. Sills enjoyed a Zoom session with Native comedian Terry Ree on March 11. The class had read about Ree’s comedy duo, Williams & Ree, and discussed the controversies over their material. During the session, students were able to ask Ree about his views of those controversies and about the nature of humor in general. COMEDIAN in the Classroom Dr. Amy Dolan Dr. Liz Sills
1200 S. Jay St. Aberdeen, SD 57401-7198 northern.edu Nonprofit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Aberdeen, South Dakota Permit No. 77 THE NSU FOUNDATION is excited to host the second annual GiveNDay, NSU’s annual day of giving, on April 6, 2022. Starting at 9 am, this 24-hour challenge is designed to inspire all supporters of Northern State to come together to provide essential funding to all areas across the University, including the College of Arts and Sciences. Friends, family, alumni, and donors are all encouraged to donate on April 6 on the GiveNDay website, www.givingday. northern.edu. As more people give, the impact increases; generous supporters of the College of Arts and Sciences have already pledged to give matches and challenge grants that will be unlocked once certain milestones have been met. Join us as we celebrate Northern State University. SUPPORT NSU on GiveNDay STAFF RETIREMENT Linda Richards Retires LINDA RICHARDS has been a secretary at NSU since 1992 and is retiring in May. She started out in the Registrar’s office and moved to the Science and Math Department in 1995. When Linda started, secretaries registered students for their classes, and she enjoyed visiting with students during that process. That task eventually was assigned to advisors, but many other tasks were added over the years. This included entering schedules, overseeing budgets, and processing orders for grants and labs (which takes a significant amount of time in the sciences). She has also supervised about 25 work-study students over the years. The annual science fair and math contests took up a considerable amount of Linda’s time beyond the normal workday, and due to her organizational skills and experience, both events function like welloiled machines. The Science and Math Department has grown considerably since Linda started. There were seven science and four math faculty in 1995; now there are eleven science faculty and five math faculty, plus a professional advisor and lab manager. This is a large group of people to manage, and Linda has done a wonderful job of keeping us all in line. We all will miss Linda dearly, and we wish her all the best for her well-deserved retirement. #OneDayOnePack givingday.northern.edu APRIL 6 7, 2022 @NorthernStateUniversityFoundation @nsufoundation @alumniNSUflippingbook.com